Coalition Supports Trump Administration’s Ban on Flavored E-Cigarettes/Vaping

 October 10, 2019

The Honorable President Donald J. Trump
President of the United States
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, D.C. 20500

Dear Mr. President,

We, the names listed below, support the Trump Administration’s efforts to protect consumers from health problems arising from the use of e-cigarettes/vaping. The CDC is reporting 1,080 cases of lung injury in 48 states, and 18 confirmed deaths in 15 states have resulted from the use of e-cigarettes.

Additionally, e-cigarettes have become popular among teens as the e-cigarette industry has promoted flavors such as “pink lemonade,” “blue raspberry cotton candy,” “funnel cake,” “gummy bear,” and “sugar cookie.” The rates of past-month e-cigarette use by teens have doubled in the past two years. According to the New England Journal of Medicine, “In 2019, the prevalence of use during the previous 30 days was more than 1 in 4 students in the 12th grade, more than 1 in 5 in the 10th grade, and more than 1 in 11 in the 8th grade.”

When vaping, consumers are using nicotine and/or THC (marijuana) products, both of which damage brain development in young people. The daily use of high-potency THC can increase the risk of psychosis fivefold. According to the CDC, “The latest findings from the investigation into lung injuries associated with e-cigarette use, or vaping, suggest products containing THC play a role in the outbreak. Among 578 patients with information on substances used in e-cigarette, or vaping, products in the 3 months prior to symptom onset, about 78% reported using THC-containing products; 37% reported exclusive use of THC-containing products. About 58% reported using nicotine-containing products; 17% reported exclusive use of nicotine-containing products.”

“Nicotine has a negative effect on adolescent brain development, causing lasting cognitive and behavioral impairments, including effects on working memory and attention. Studies have shown that vape products can contain dangerous toxins, including heavy metals and chemicals known to cause cancer and other diseases.”

The free market requires that businesses abide by current law and educate consumers on the risks associated with the use of their products. Unfortunately, e-cigarette companies are both ignoring current laws and misinforming their consumers.

E-cigarette companies have not complied with efforts to stem teen use. The FDA “issued more than 8,600 warning letters and more than 1,000 civil money penalties (fines) to retailers — both online and in brick-and-mortar retail stores” for selling e-cigarette components to youth.

Furthermore, e-cigarette companies have not adequately educated young people on the risks associated with the use of their products. In one case, a major e-cigarette company particularly targeted youth with their advertising.

Until e-cigarette companies are willing to abide by current restrictions on youth sales and further research is conducted by the CDC and FDA regarding the health consequences associated with e-cigarettes/vaping, we approve of the Trump Administration’s decision to halt flavored e-cigarettes to protect consumers, particularly youth. We also ask that the Trump Administration explore further restrictions on the vaping of THC products.

Jeff Hunt
Vice President of Public Policy, Colorado Christian University
Director, Centennial Institute
Chairman, Western Conservative Summit

Dr. Donald Sweeting
President, Colorado Christian University

Penny Young Nance
CEO & President
Concerned Women for America

Eunie Smith
Eagle Forum

Timothy Head
Executive Director
Faith & Freedom Coalition

Gary Marx
Former Executive Director
Faith & Freedom Coalition

Luke Dean Niforatos
Chief of Staff and Senior Policy Advisor
Smart Approaches to Marijuana

Rob Chambers
American Council on Addiction and Alcohol Problems

Colin Hanna
Let Freedom Ring

Chad Connelly
Faith Wins

C Preston Noelle III
Tradition, Family, Property Inc.

Dr. Carl Herbster
President, AdvanceUSA

Peter Droege
Fellow in Marijuana and Addiction
Centennial Institute

Aaron Baer
Citizens for Community Values

James Greer
National Drug and Alcohol Screening Association

Brian Drew
National Drug and Alcohol Screening Association

Jo McGuire
Executive Director
National Drug and Alcohol Screening Association